Research finding summaries

Disintegrating US-China Economic Symbiosis and the New Inter-Imperial Rivalry

The dynamics of US-China rivalry is an inter-imperial rivalry driven by inter-capitalist competition. Competition for the world market could soon turn into intensifying clashes of spheres of influence and even war. It is not new. It resembles a lot of the dynamics as described in Lenin's Imperialism as the Highest Stage of Capitalism. In the book, published in 1917, Lenin talked about the competition between German and British banks to lend to Latin American countries to build railroads and to ensure the projects would rely on German or British supplies. This is just like talking about the competition between China and the U.S. to offer credits to Belt and Road countries to build infrastructure. In the early twentieth century, inter-capitalist competition led to inter-imperial rivalry culminated in two world wars.

By |2020-07-02T09:39:04-04:00Jul 2, 2020|

The Political Economy of Peacebuilding in Somalia

There will be a long political struggle to build an equitable Somalia, it will be complicated and frustrating, and it will require cultivating new social imaginaries that link political, economic, and cultural domains of life in a way that challenges the present era of depressing capitalist realism.

By |2020-06-17T12:44:11-04:00Jun 17, 2020|

Precarity and the Politics of Existential Crisis

How we navigate this moment of intense uncertainty and collective anxiety will shape the future. Thinking about the many ways that our precarity manifests will be crucial to avoid re-inscribing the inequalities and injustices of the pre-coronavirus world.

By |2020-05-13T14:37:28-04:00May 13, 2020|

Financial Crisis, Capitalist Power and US State Exceptionalism

Capitalists exercise disproportionate political power through both the state and the market, and their power derives primarily from the productive assets they hold. However, over the last 40 years, the assets of the rich have been financialized. This has increased their ability to exit political territories through capital markets. While this increases the power of capitalists to avoid expropriation demands, unique characteristics about the American state might make it best positioned to take finance on. 

By |2020-04-29T10:34:58-04:00Apr 29, 2020|

Erich Fromm’s Marxist Sociology Forty Years Later

Looking back on Fromm’s legacy today, at a point where sociologists and Marxists are increasingly returning to his work, it is clear that what Fromm left us is a nuanced form of Marxian sociology that can help account for the relations between economic life, political movements, and inner emotional dynamism that underpin many of the changes that we are witness to in the current world situation. In a situation that is rapidly moving into dangerous territory, in what promises to be a recession as deep as 1929, we could do worse today than to look to Fromm for assistance.

By |2020-04-08T11:41:49-04:00Apr 8, 2020|

Debt-Led Exploitation in Brazil

In Brazil, fiscal and monetary policies have favored the financial fraction of capital and established a state and institutional apparatus through which finance extorted income from labor. Together, public debt and taxation form a fiscal complex that, in addition to redistributing surpluses, deepens labor exploitation.

By |2020-02-19T13:13:37-05:00Feb 19, 2020|